For the first time, Jackass has added new cast-members for one of their movies. Rachel Wolfson, who has a background in comedy, got a message from practically out of the blue from Johnny Knoxville asking if she’d like to join the cast for Jackass Forever. Wolfson jumped at the chance to become the first woman to be in the cast of Jackass and, smash-cut, there’s Wolfson in a movie, licking a taser and, later, getting stabbed in the face by a scorpion.
So what’s it like to be the new person (and a woman) in a Jackass movie? Wolfson spoke with us recently to tell us all about it.
I always get weird talking about Jackass because these movies make me very anxious…
Oh, are you all right?
The question is are you okay?
Physically, I am okay.
This is the first Jackass movie where they’ve added new cast members. So how does the word get out? How does that get to you?
You know, it was a complete surprise. I remember in 2019, I noticed that Johnny Knoxville was liking a bunch of my content on Instagram, my jokes and my memes. And then not too long after that, I got a direct message from Johnny Knoxville, which when I first got it, I couldn’t believe it. I thought I was being pranked. And he was like, “Hey, do you want to hop on a call with me? I want to ask you something.” So I got on the phone with him and he said that they were doing some kind of anniversary special. So at first, I didn’t even know it was a movie. And he asked if I would be interested, and I was like, yes. Whatever Johnny Knoxville asked of me, I was like, “I am interested.”
If Johnny Knoxville called me, which he’s not going to, but if he did, I don’t think I’d have the same answer you did.
Well, for me, it just seems like a no-brainer. I mean, I grew up watching Jackass. And I’ve always been a fan of the franchise, and obviously, Johnny Knoxville and all those guys. So, for me, it was like, “Of course I want to meet you and Jeff Tremaine.” And so we had a meeting not too long after that. It was like, “Hey, do you want to come play with us?” That’s when they told me they were shooting the movie. But it’s still at that point I was nervous because I didn’t know what they wanted with me. But I just knew that I couldn’t pass up on this opportunity.
It’s human nature anytime someone notable “likes” something on social media you start thinking, oh, maybe they’re taking an interest in some of my work. And that’s mostly never the case. But this time it actually happened.
Right. It’s the modern-day getting discovered on the street. But you’re right. I mean, I’ve had plenty of experiences in the past where famous people liked my stuff and that was the end of the interaction. I mean, this was truly like, oh, this person notices me. They’re liking what I’m doing. It’s not weird or creepy. They’re genuinely liking my jokes. What are the odds?
So once you get this offer, there’s no soul-searching? Maybe thinking this could be very dangerous?
I mean, there were all of those thoughts. It was two things can be true: What am I doing? Am I going to get hurt? And also, I don’t care. I need to find out.
So how do you find out what you’re doing? Is it just like it is in the movies where he announces it and that’s when you find out? Or are you told before?
You don’t really find out what you’re doing until that moment. I mean, there are certain scenes that they might ask right before you do them, “Are you comfortable with this?” And I just wanted to always come from a place of yes. I told myself before I did Jackass that I was going to say yes to pretty much whatever they asked, as long as it wasn’t butt stuff. But I didn’t think they wanted that. And also that I wasn’t going to cry on site.
How many waivers from the good folks at Viacom do you have to sign before you’re allowed to do this movie?
I mean, there was definitely paperwork, for sure. But it’s like the standard paperwork that I feel like other movies do, you know?
I feel there’s more of a chance in this of you getting hurt than in something else?
I mean, look at what happened this past year. I feel like any set is kind of dangerous, you know?
Well, that’s true.
I feel like if I’m going to be on a set with dangerous things, I want to be on the Jackass set because it seems like they know what they’re doing.
So, you licked electricity.
What does that feel like? I assume bad.
Yeah. I mean, it’s definitely uncomfortable. Imagine sticking your tongue into a socket.
I can’t. I can’t do it. I don’t know how you do this.
I mean, I was so nervous because, I mean, anytime you see the guys on set get tased, they seem to be in a lot of pain. And I had never really experienced anything with a taser before. So it was very uncomfortable. It was a very uncomfortable feeling.
You let a scorpion sting you in the face.
They are evil-looking creatures.
I haven’t had much experience with scorpions before. That may come as a surprise to you, but my dad did get stung in the toe by a scorpion growing up and I think this one came back for revenge.
Did he lose his toe?
My dad kept his toe, but he had to go to the hospital and get a shot.
Is this like a scorpion that’s not quite as poisonous as another scorpion? Is it like snakes where some are more deadly than others?
I don’t know much about scorpions, but they used two different kinds on set. And one’s definitely more painful than the other.
You did both?
Yes. I’m not really sure what made it more painful, if it was the bark or the bite. But know that if you see a small scorpion, it is not less painful than the big ones. Size does not matter. Also, there’s always a handler and also medics on set in case I happen to be allergic. They had someone who had access to medical care.
Is there more you did we will see in the eventual longer version?
Oh yeah. There’s a lot of stuff that you guys didn’t get to see that will be in 4.5 and I’m very excited for that to come out as well.
Can you give a preview of one?
Oh, no. I know I can’t. Just because I don’t think I’m necessarily allowed to. But they got so much good content for this movie, that 4.5 will be such a great movie as well.
Well, one spoiler is you are still alive. We know that.
Yes. I’m physically still alive. Did you watch the whole thing or did you look away?
I looked away. I’m fine with the stunts. But the stuff involving male body parts, and that can go on for so long, I had to look away at times.
I told my dad and mom to bring a puke bucket.
‘Jackass Forever’ opens this week in theaters. You can contact Mike Ryan directly on Twitter.